Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Southward Ho! A Spell of Sunshine >> Chapter XV / More of the Genius of the Old North State >> Page 325

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Novel (Romance) | Redfield | 1854
Transcription VIRTUE OF THE OLD NORTH STATE. 325
ever he has eaten. He is the emblem of a race the most sleek,
satisfied, and saucy in the world. You see the benevolence of
the master in the condition of the slave. He derives his chief
enjoyments, indeed, from the gay humors of the latter. He
seems to have been chosen by Heaven as a sort of guardian of
the negro, his chief business being to make him happy.
"`Our North-Carolinian, with all his deficiencies, is a model of
simplicity and virtue. His commendable qualities are innumer-
able. He never runs into excesses. You will never see him
playing Jack Pudding at a feast. He commits no extravagances.
You will never find him working himself to death for a living.
He is as moderate in his desires as he is patient in his toils. He
seems to envy nobody. You can scarcely put him out of tem-
per. He contracts no debts, and is suspicious of those who do.
He pays as he goes, and never through the nose. He wastes
none of his capital, if he never increases it, and his economy is
such that he never troubles himself to furnish a reason for his
conduct, before he is asked for it. In truth he is almost too vir-
tuous for our time. He seems to have been designed for quite
another planet. He is totally unambitious, and though you may
congratulate yourself at getting ahead of him, you will be morti-
fied to learn from himself that this is altogether because he pre-
fers to remain behind. He has no wants now that I remember,
with a single exception. Without having a single moral feature
in common with Diogenes, he perhaps will be obliged to you if
you will not interrupt his sunshine.'"" Well, have you done at last?" demanded the fiery little son
of the old North State, as the other appeared to pause.
The chronicle ? yes."
Well, I'll just take leave to say that it's a most slanderous
and lying history from beginning to end."
To what do you object ?"
To everything."
But what is there that you deny to be true ?"
Well, there's that about our shipping. Why, instead of two
vessels, Wilmington's got fifty, more or less, and some of them
steamers, and some of them square-rigged, brigs and hermaphro-
dites."